10 April, 2019
Today 350 Aotearoa has launched a pledge
for New Zealanders to join the resistance against oil giant, OMV, after its announcement that it intends to drill for
oil and gas in their permit off the coast of Otago.
OMV’s announcement comes almost a year after the coalition government banned all new offshore oil and gas permits in
Aotearoa. OMV bought this Great South Basin permit from Shell last year.
“Today, our friends on the frontline of the issue, Oil Free Otago, called for OMV to “expect resistance”. We’re calling
on New Zealanders to join them to make sure OMV meets the full force of NZ-style peaceful resistance when they try to
drill,” said Niamh O’Flynn, Executive Director of 350 Aotearoa.
“In Aotearoa we’ve been resisting the oil industry drilling off our coasts for almost a decade. One-by-one, the oil
giants are packing up, tails between their legs, and leaving. Jacinda’s ban on new offshore oil and gas permits was a
huge step, but it doesn’t stop companies with existing permits to start projects that put our climate’s safety in
jeopardy. We need to keep all new fossil fuels in the ground. Our planet doesn’t care about permits.”
The public now have 30 days to make a submission to the EPA on the application for marine discharge consent so OMV can
release contaminants, estimated to be about 250 mls, into the ocean.
“This consent process on a minor detail of a major drilling operation is a ridiculous distraction to steal public energy
away from the real problem: It’s 2019. We shouldn’t be drilling for any new oil and gas.”
“We know what to do. Together, the people of Aotearoa have been successful in tackling some of the most powerful
corporations on earth, and showing them the door. Together, we’ll support the people of Otago to do it again.”